Chery is coming to Germany with this car

Chery is coming to Germany with this car

And Omoda, another car brand from China is entering the German market. Car manufacturer Chery is behind it. The Omoda 5 is scheduled to arrive in early 2024 as an SUV – both electric and also as a petrol engine. Prices from around 27,000 euros. Here’s how the test drive went.

  • Omoda is the first Chery brand to come to Germany

  • First example: Omoda 5 as a combustion engine, hybrid and electric car

  • Competition: Kia, Hyundai and Genesis

No other Chinese manufacturer sells as many cars as Chery – and has done so since 2001. But the company, founded in 1997, has so far avoided Europe and recently. 1.4 million cars sold to another 80 countries. But that will change soon. In order for growth to continue, the export champion is now pushing from emerging countries to industrialized nations: Chery will start in the Netherlands in 2023 – and should also start here in the fall of 2024.

The Chinese are planning medium term with three brands and about a dozen models, including a few Tesla fighters that enter the upper class as Exlantix. But it starts with Omoda’s brand of capitalism, which the head of strategy Zhu Shaodong does not want to manage against other foreigners from China, but above all against Koreans. “With their speed, their dedication and their success, they are our role models,” says Zhu, “and their market share as well.”

Chery brands: Omoda, Jaecoo and Exlantix

He picked up something else in Seoul. Just as the Koreans serve different target groups with Hyundai, Kia and Genesis, Chery also wants to align itself with us: “Omoda as a design-oriented brand it’s something like our Kia, and as an answer to Hyundai we’re bringing Jaecoo with rust and smarter cars.” And with Exlantix, like Genesis, they’re targeting people with higher incomes.

The Korean goal is not the only difference from other Chinese newcomers such as Nio, BYD or XPeng. When the competition focuses only on electricity, Chery remains committed to combustion engines and so it runs on two tracks. “The world has not yet reached the point where everyone can drive electric cars everywhere,” says Zhu, and European boss Jochen Tüting agrees. “Even in Germany, there are enough customers who are losing new car prices to their existing brands for electrification,” says Tüting, and he sees this as a target group.

Kompakt-SUV Omoda 5: Interior, Details

The first is Omoda 5 Looks like a classic SUV, which aims at the heart of the compact class with a length of 4.40 meters and a wheelbase of 2.63 meters. And the new Hyundai Kona cannot cost more than 27,000 euros if Chery wants to take on the Koreans.

Visually, Omoda 5 maintains a certain independence. And on the inside, the Kona competitor doesn’t look as cluttered and fussy as the Chinese usually do. Instead of big screen themes and playing programs, there are almost normal, Free digital cockpit with 25 inch display and around it is an elegant selection of accessories and decorative elements made of glass, the likes of which until now is only known from BMW (!). And although Omoda 5 uses a common platform, there is enough space for everyone.

Test drive of Omoda 5 petrol engine

The Omoda 5 with a combustion engine has a more distinctive waffle grille© Davide_Busetto

The car also lowers good stats while driving. Tandem is disabled 1.6 liter turbo petrol engine with 7-speed dual clutch it drives smoothly and smoothly like in a VW Tiguan. With a good 180 hp and 275 Nm, the Chinese has enough bite. The chassis and handling are willing to compromise as the father of the family appreciates.

It does not appear in the best sense of the word: That would adequately describe the five parts from Wuhu – if it were not for them. multiple support systems would be. Lane systems and speed notices, for example, are so nervously placed that they sometimes howl and wail like a playground on a Friday evening. You have to go there again in Raunheim, Hesse, where Chery prepares cars for Europe.

Stronger impulse than road speed, From 0 to 100 km / h in seven seconds, with a full sound of 190 objects and at least a little something in the ears – what is unusual about this trip in China is not only the speed and sound, but also the attitude of the on-board computer at the end. More than 500 km of the remaining range is still on display after the test – maybe the old world of combustion engines is not so bad.

Current driving reports and vehicle tests. Free from ADAC

Omoda 5 also as an electric car

Recorded by freelance writer Thomas Geiger of Omoda 5
Omoda 5 is scheduled to come to Germany in 2024© Thomas Geiger

Or is it? Of course, the folks at Wuhu also know that the future is electric – and they’ve prepared the Omoda 5 for it. Following the example of the Kona, the crossover is coming shortly after its launch as a hybrid – and also as an electric car. For an estimated price of more than 40,000 euros, then there is a battery with 48 or 64 kWh instead of a petrol tank and an electric motor with 100 or 150 kW instead of four cylinders. The Chinese expect consumption to be less than 15 kWh per 100 km Plots of 350 and 440 kilometers respectively and therefore they are in the middle of the market.

They will only have a hard time competing when it comes to pay. Because more than 11 kW at the AC outlet and 110 kW for direct current are not provided. At least not yet. Later, when the Exlantix comes, there will be its own electric platform, an 800-volt network and a charging power of more than 200 kW.

Chery wants to catch up with the Koreans

Zhang Guibing, head of Chery International and therefore something like the company’s foreign minister, also knows that they are not the first Chinese to enter Europe. But Chery made good use of the waiting time. “We’re late, but big,” says Zhang, almost defiantly.

The a two-pronged approach and combustion engines and electric vehicles may prove to be a good strategy. Such as trust in regular sales with our national companies in major markets and a regular dealer network. So it is not surprising that the boss of Chery sets big goals: “In a few years we want to be where Hyundai and Kia are today in Europe.”

Workshop and dealer network

When asked, the Chinese manufacturer explains that a workshop and dealer network are being established in Germany. Which Contractual partner is one of the largest dealer networks in Germany. Omoda promises a nationwide presence for the brand. The online ordering agency model – which many other foreigners have tried and which others are now rejecting – will not be present at Omoda. Those interested in the brand will have to be patient before taking a test drive.

Text: Thomas Geiger